Moose Lake Star Gazette - Serving Carlton and Pine Counties Since 1895

By Dan Reed 

Carlton County rehires HHS Director Dave Lee

 


In an unexpected move, the Carlton County Board of Commissioners at their meeting June 27 rehired Dave Lee to his old position as director of the Carlton County Health and Human Services. Lee had been hired and worked for one month as the Public Health and Human Services (PHHS) director for St. Louis County.

Carlton County had gone through the posting and interviewing for a replacement and had a short list of possible candidates. Before a final pick was chosen, Lee informed the board he would like to return to his old position.

“Dave Lee did a wonderful job for us over the years,” explained Commissioner Gary Peterson. “He is well respected in the region. I think he will continue a balanced stewardship of the HHS programs and serve the people of Carlton County well.”

County Coordinator Dennis Genereau commented, “I know this causes some disruption for the St. Louis County HHS but this will all work out in time. We share a mission and programming with several of the counties in the Arrowhead region.”

Lee starts working in Carlton County again within two weeks.

Over the last months Genereau has been leading a search for more office space in Cloquet for county services. It has been stated in past board meetings the new HHS building is over-crowded. A study of space needs in existing facilities was requested by the board earlier.

Genereau announced at this board meeting the Cloquet Labor Temple is available from a private owner for $250,000. The two-story brick structure was originally built in about 1951, has 11,000 square feet, and lots of office space currently available with little remodeling. The roof is 20 years old.

About a block from the current PHHS building, it contains both mid and large open meeting spaces with an up-to-date kitchen. A dumbwaiter brings supplies to the second floor. Three phase electrical is on site with central air conditioning. Sitting on .75 acre lots, there is room for 30 to 40 cars in the parking area without using street parking.

“I know this needs more study and a discussion will be held at the Committee of the Whole meeting this next week,” said Genereau. “I wanted to bring this up now so you can give me a go ahead to explore the specifics or if we should look elsewhere.” The board agreed to let Genereau study the purchase of the Labor Temple and the pros and cons.

There are renters in the building at this time, including a bar. All options are open for study at this time.

Karola Dalen, Resource and Recycling Coordinator, requested and it was approved to waive the zoning application fees for new recycling centers in Holyoke and Blackhoof townships. Money for construction is in the current budget. The new buildings would be 16 feet by 20 feet with a roll-up garage door and a 42-inch wide access door on the side.

Bonds for previous capital improvements of $8,765,000 were sold and reissued with a savings, estimated by county Auditor Paul Gassert, of over $1 million during the course of their repayments. These bonds are scheduled to be paid off in 2030.

Pinewood Services of Cloquet will now do all county document shredding at a cost of $35/pound. They will provide containers for paper to be placed and transported.

A disaster data recovery service was approved with Itasca County as a backup for Carlton County electronic data.

Assessor Marci Moreland announced this was the last meeting she was attending in that position as she looks forward to retirement.

 

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